Thursday, August 6, 2009

More Internal Debate: What I Could Accomplish as a Christianity Examiner

Back to my debate with myself about whether to pursue a second on-line writing gig, this one with I made two posts about this yesterday. I don't know what to do here. I had a second article at selected as an editor's choice, which will mean more page views and maybe some more revenue. But I'm day-dreaming more and more about what I could accomplish at Examiner.

As I said yesterday, if I do this I would apply for a position as Christianity Examiner for Northwest Arkansas, which, because Examiner doesn't have a NWA site, is a position not even created yet. That's a minor hindrance, however, and I believe they would very likely create the position in anticipation of a local site.

As a Christianity Examiner, I would try to post articles that would cover the complete Christian community in these parts, not just on the evangelical community. Some types of articles I dream I would include are:
  • News of churches: who's having VBS? When is everyone's Christmas program? What is the pastor's--any and every pastor--sermon series? What new adult Sunday school series are about to start? What are the teens doing next? This could be many, many articles.
  • Devotionals, maybe most days of the week. I've never written devotionals, so this would be something different for me. Probably a good writing skill to have.
  • Interviews with pastors and other clergy, including associate ministers.
  • News of Christian schools, including interviews with administration and staff.
  • News from Christian bookstores and other businesses.
  • Bible study stuff, either a few things I think of or analysis of some Bible study out there ready to purchase.
  • Excerpts and analysis from Christian classics.
  • Evaluation of Sunday School curriculum, non-denominational type, that is.
  • Church history articles. This would be a never-ending series. Most of the source information is now on the Internet, usually scanned.
  • Book reviews of Christian books, both fiction and non-fiction.
  • Maybe even an occasional--or weekly--guest article from the clergy. I don't know if this would be allowed per the Examiner rules.
  • Any special programming on Christian radio and television available in the area.

As I've daydreamed about this, I've had more ideas pass through without capture. I imagine I could expand this list by 50 percent, easy. Actually, here's some more that just came to mind.

  • News articles (not necessarily local) of interest to Christians. This could be anything from the SCOTUS decisions on church-state issues to cultural stuff.
  • If I could get them, interviews with ministers who have a national audience.
  • Interviews with Christian writers. I've met a fair number of these, and they are always looking for ways to promote their books.
  • A survey of the contents of the current issue of Christian magazines.

I guess what I'm trying to say is I would not have a shortage of material to post. Variety should be easy. The posts would be a mixture of current events, which will bring one type of page views, and "evergreen" content, which will bring another type of page views.

It seems to me that this would work, given the right amount of work on my part. I would have to figure out the data gathering part, and see if the time is available to do even a fraction of all I can dream. But meanwhile the dream is good. Every writer wants their writing to have an impact on an audience, be it big or small. This could work toward that purpose.

Stay tuned, for the debate is not over yet.

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